I hope the members of the Nebraska Legislature all read Westin Miller’s op-ed piece in the April 25 Omaha World-Herald. Mr. Miller suggests ending party primaries to improve politics in Nebraska. In this day of heightened extremism in both major political parties, something needs to be done to require elected officials to represent all of their constituents. As Mr. Miller noted, “open primaries not only have a slightly moderating affect on politicians, but they also make incumbents more accountable to their entire district rather than to the richest or most radical.“
Nonpartisan primaries currently work well for not just Nebraska’s Legislature but also for many municipal elections including Omaha mayoral and council, MUD and OPPD elections. I urge state senators to make this change a priority in the 2022 legislative session.
Ron Bucher, Elkhorn
Keep them safe
Spring is here and so is the construction season! It is Work Zone Safety Week this week.
When approaching and driving through a construction zone, please remember that the people working are someone’s spouse, parent, child, grandparent or grandchild. Everyone wants to go home every day safely. Slow down, put your phone down and pay attention — it could save your life and/or the person working to improve our roads and bridges.
Cathy Nachreiner, Yutan, Neb.
JMN Construction LLC
We need City Council members who care about our health and well-being. That’s why I’m voting for Sara Kohen on May 11, and I hope fellow residents of City Council District 7 will join me.
Sara has a proven track record of public service and is prepared to tackle the challenges of the ongoing COVID-19 crisis. She listens to experts and prioritizes public health.
Safeguarding public health also means investing in citywide health resources, promoting programs for mental wellness and fighting climate change. Sara will steward public funds to emphasize sustainable transportation, parks and libraries, and will work to ensure that everyone in Omaha has the opportunity to lead a healthy and safe life, free from violence.
Over and over, Sara’s opponent has dismissed public health evidence and the advice of medical experts in favor of playing politics. One example is her opponent's approach to mask mandates intended to stop the spread of the virus, choosing instead to put our welfare at risk.
I view this behavior as irresponsible and look forward to being represented by someone who is dedicated to seeing that Omaha is a great place to live for generations to come. Sara Kohen is that candidate.
Barbara Ruser, Omaha
Responding to the Public Pulse letter submitted by Susan Johannes of Elkhorn, I find it surprising that she does not understand the definition of the word "orphan." She states, “One should not assume that taking in an orphaned child is a burden to every Nebraskan.” The word orphan, when used as a noun, means a child whose parents are dead. Most of the unaccompanied children crossing the border are not orphans.
Unless you are a border patrol agent, most people would not know whether or not the children crossing the border is an orphan or not. The agents know! Most likely they are not orphans, but they may be anchor children for their parents.
It is sad that our VPOTUS, who has been tasked with finding a solution to this crisis, has not been able to find the time to visit the southern border. She doesn’t want her face or name attached to the colossal mess that the border has become. It is mystifying that former President Trump had it figured out.
Scott Long, Omaha
The term “climate solutions” brings images of turn off the lights and carpooling to mind, but farmers and ranchers are vitally important in the fight against climate change. Our grasslands with deep roots and healthy soils have the natural ability to capture and store carbon. With the Growing Climate Solutions Act (GCSA), Nebraskan farmers will be able to add the existing voluntary carbon market to their portfolio of options, and receive the credit for their land stewardship. It is a very practical solution, a true win-win. But farmers aren’t the only ones who could benefit from the GCSA.
According to Audubon’s recent climate report, two-thirds of North American birds are at risk of extinction due to rising temperatures and climate-related events. As a lifelong Nebraskan and a person who loves birds and going birdwatching, this is a frightening statistic. The GCSA is an action we can take now, it’s a good fit for Nebraska and it’s good for the birds.
I would like to thank Sen. Deb Fischer for her support of this important bipartisan legislation and strongly encourage other representatives to join.
Kristal Stoner, Lincoln, Neb.
Kader’s vital help
This letter is in reference to the April 19 article on Dr. Kader. Dr. Kader saved my life in 1982 when I contracted spinal meningitis and a bone marrow depression. I was 2½. It was to the point that the penicillin they had been giving me wasn’t working. He had the hospital stop giving it to me, had Chloramphenicol rushed in from the Shriners, and here I am. He worked with angels. I am forever grateful to him, every day.